Washington: The US is aware of India’s position that talks and terrorism cannot go together and has asked Pakistan to crackdown on terror groups like the LeT and the JeM that are responsible for attacks inside India, a senior White House official has said.

The top official also encouraged the two South Asian neighbours to engage in talks to reduce tensions. “The US is very aware of India’s position (that talks and terror cannot go together) and we have called on Pakistan to crackdown on organisations like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e -Mohammed (JeM) and others," the official said, on condition of anonymity.

“We have called Pakistan to take actions against people involved in the Mumbai attack, the Pathankot attack and other attacks. So, US is very clear about its position," the senior administration official told reporters during a conference call.

The official made the remarks while responding to a question on India’s stand that talks and terror cannot go together in the context of the Trump administration’s South Asia policy that seeks a direct dialogue between India and Pakistan to reduce tensions.

Pakistan needs to crackdown on terror groups, the official said. The official also referred to the India-US joint statement issued after the White House meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump on June 26, which made it clear that these issues are important to the US.

“And we are working with India to improve its counter terrorism. I think there is a lot of understanding between the US and India on this issue," the official said in response to a question.

Earlier this month, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had told Parliament that the Indian government had laid the “road map" envisioning peace and normalcy with Pakistan even before it took over. “But it can’t be one-sided...Terror and talks cannot go together. The day they stop promoting terror, we will start the talks," she had said.

The State department on Wednesday had also asked the two countries to engage in talks. “I think one of the things that we would do is ask or encourage India and Pakistan to sit down together and engage in direct dialogue that is aimed at reducing tensions between both of those countries," State department spokesperson Heather Nauert had told reporters. PTI

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